HOW I FELL IN LOVE WITH BROADCASTING – Raypower’s Ambrose Somide
For Ambrose Somide, a father of three, the journey did not just start. In fact, the journey for him started way back in the 80s when he first pitched his broadcasting tent with the FRCN. Like a rolling stone, he later moved from there to Radio Nigeria, Abeokuta. From there again, he moved to OGBC, before finally settling down at DAAR Communications, owners of AIT, Raypower and Faaji FM. Currently the co-ordinator of Faaji FM, he granted AZUH ARINZE …
Who is Ambrose Somide?
Ambrose Somide is a Nigerian, a Yoruba, I am married with three kids. Ambrose Shomide was born a couple of years ago in Abeokuta, Ogun State. I did International Law at University of Lagos.
How did you get into broadcasting?
I got into this job right after my secondary school, way back in the 80s and I’ve worked with the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria, Radio Nigeria, Abeokuta before the station was closed down along with others in 1983. Thereafter, I moved to OGBC. From OGBC, I went to the university, I came back from the university and joined the pioneering team of Raypower 100.5FM.
How did you meet Baba Gboin?
Well, when we started Raypower 100.5FM in 1994, I think I had stayed for about two, three months handling Mini Jojo when one guy just came in and said he wanted to see me. So, he came and spoke with me and said he was a presenter on Radio Lagos and he’s versed in Yoruba programmes and all of that. He wanted me to feature him on Mini Jojo for just five or ten minutes. I said okay, why not. So, I told my producer, Dayo Sobukola to take him to the studio to audition him. So, they auditioned him and they saw that he was good, he was okay and the following week, he was given an appointment to come. He came on the programme the first time and we discovered he was good. So, from then on, he started featuring on the programme regularly, from 15 to 30 minutes. Well, I will say we started the programme together.
How do you people compose your songs? Who writes and who supplies the tunes?
I think it’s a joint thing. But the albums we have recorded, I did most of the composition and the arrangement. Baba Gboin, of course, contributed the comic and the humour. But most of the songs, especially those that deal with issues in Nigeria, the socio-political commentaries and all that were written by me. And with a lot of contributions coming from him too.
How did you meet your wife?
How I met my wife?
Well, way back in 1984, we were working with Radio Nigeria. Though, I joined Radio Nigeria before her. So, she was employed and attached to the newsroom. That was how we started dating and we continued till it led to marriage and we have three boys today.
How did you woo her?
I can’t remember (laughs). Sorry, I just can’t remember.
Okay, has there been anytime that your wife complained about you not giving her enough time and maybe cheating on her?
I think that is a personal thing (smiling).
Please, let’s hear it.
Well, I think she understands what I do and she has worked for a radio station before and she, of course, knows what it takes, and its demands. There is no way I can hide from people with the kind of job I do. I get to meet people everyday. Well, every woman will want to…how do I put it now? Will want to show the lady thing in them when they see their husbands giving other things attention, most especially giving other people the attention they are to have. With this kind of job that I am doing, I meet a lot of people and there is no way you can escape it. Let’s not pretend about it because I hate pretensions in my life.
How do you cope with the ladies that want to be around you, to be your friend?
I am a very friendly person. I don’t turn people down, and I think I cope. Once in a while, I get myself into trouble, but I still cope. I don’t discriminate; the Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba, white and black, whoever and I don’t read meanings into actions.
What are your likes and your dislikes?
I hate people pretending. It’s good to show the real you. It turns me off when you come around and you are pretending. I like people that are frank, both men and women, call a spade a spade. That is it.
Who is your role model?
When I got into radio, the man that gave me inspiration that I will call my role model is Olusesan Ekisola. And I think he did a wonderful job on me for whatever I have achieved today. There is also a guy in Ibadan, he is Laolu Olatunbosun. He’s another source of inspiration. He was a guy that I used to listen to and watch on TV who will combine Yoruba and English perfectly.
Just like you?
Yeah! So, I desired to be like him and I have been able to achieve it now.
What else do you do apart from your presentation on TV or radio?
I read a lot.
Yes, but don’t you go out to be MC at events?
Yes, I handle MC jobs, both Yoruba and English, and also corporate and personal; whichever!
Do you also act?
Yes, I’ve acted in one or two movies.
Are you not interested in acting?
Not that I’m not interested; maybe the time is not yet ripe for such. Well, I’m just giving ten percent of my potentials for now. I have not gone far into what I am doing now. I still have so much to give and I think acting will come much later.
How rich are you?
I am very rich in the Lord, because in my house, in my heart, the Holy Spirit is there, and when the Holy Spirit is in your heart, then you are very high in the spirit, which is better than an empty pocket. So, in my house, my heart, my car, everywhere I am rich and filled with the Holy Spirit.
What is your hobby?
My hobby? I read a lot, I don’t have much time to do much sport again, but I like to read and enjoy shooting things and then sit back to enjoy what I have shot. I have cameras and also take still shots.
What is your favourite food?
Whaoh! I enjoy iyan a lot and efo soup (pounded yam and vegetable soup).
Which is your favourite car?
I like Honda cars.
What is your favourite colour?
I’m in love with blue, then black.
What is your aspiration for the next millennium?
I want to be Nigeria’s ambassador to whatever country. That’s why I’m going into international law and diplomacy. I want to be an ambassador to any country, whether Togo. So, I am preparing myself because one day I will have to get up and answer the call.
Do you have any regret?
Doing this job, I don’t have any regret, but going into broadcasting is very demanding. It takes me away from my family and promises a lot of temptations. No regrets in going into broadcasting.
NB: This interview had been published before
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